L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said
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  1. #1
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    L-Tec PCM-VPi 20 year old machine any good

    Thinking about looking at one for sale. I did a little research on this unit and see that it is basically the same as a ESAB PCM-625i 40amp plasma cutter. At 20 years old would this be a decent plasma cutter if the price is right and are consumables still available. I don't know what torch it has but it is said to be working good. It is a green machine labeled with L-tec VPi

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    Last edited by N2 Welding; 03-19-2017 at 02:43 PM.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  2. #2
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    N2,

    The torch should be a PT-31XL 25'. As far as I know, this is a torch that has a large aftermarket behind it.
    I don't know much about the history of the unit.

  3. #3
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    It is the same as the ESAB 625. Nothing changed forever on these. They were very popular and pretty durable too. The torch is the PT31 as stated above and it and the consumables are very inexpensive on E-Bay. As any inverter it could last 1 day or another 10 years. If I remember correctly from my distributor days selling a Lot of VPI's the torch system is designed for Drag Cutting. There are a crap load of these VPI's still on the job. Just remember you can buy a New 40 amp 115/230v Thermal Dynamics with a 4 year warranty for under 1K. Just mentioned it as a price measuring tool.

  4. #4
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Thanks for the info. The price seems fair to me for what it is. I Would not dream of buying without checking it out under load for some time to make sure it gives a good bill of health. Thank you again. If it is stil available I think I will go check it out.

    I was interested in learning about how well they perform and how nice of a cut they give.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  5. #5
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Seller said it has not been used in 5 years so he is going to get it hooked up today and let me know how it works. I still need to test for myself but at least this way I won't waste my gas and time to look at the machine.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  6. #6
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Was able to test it out today and made the purchase. Cut's 1/4" and smaller pretty good. Little bit slow and sloppy on 1/2" steel.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  7. #7
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    See if you can fit factory original XT consumables in the torch.. Post up the plasma head..The 40 amp Esab's cut pretty well,and like a laser on.250 If it only takes XL consumables, then you will not really get all that great of cuts..
    Esab 2200i-TA34
    Klutch 220si
    Klutch 140si
    Thermal Arc LM-200 Lincoln feeders
    Thermal Arc Pee-Wee 85s
    Thermal Dynamics 38XL-SL-40
    Victor 82 (A-60)
    Hypertherm 45XP












    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong!

  8. #8
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Well it has the xl torch. I will no doubt look into that Scott. I saw that torch handles may be purchased so I may be able to cobble something together. Sitting at a gas station trying to decide on a redbox movie. Will be home soon and will post up images of the torch.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  9. #9
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Ok I have 20 pics so I'll break it down into four posts.

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    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  10. #10
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

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    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  11. #11
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

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    Last edited by N2 Welding; 03-26-2017 at 11:44 PM.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  12. #12
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

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    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  13. #13
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/5-Pack-20860...EAAOSwiDFYOSj2

    right stuff..

    You can get nozzles from Zoro tools also.. Aftermarket, but excellent USA quality.

    There is also a long life 35-40 amp nozzle available.. The E-bay ones are a little smaller orifice Both are good.. 21008
    Last edited by Brand X; 03-26-2017 at 11:51 PM.
    Esab 2200i-TA34
    Klutch 220si
    Klutch 140si
    Thermal Arc LM-200 Lincoln feeders
    Thermal Arc Pee-Wee 85s
    Thermal Dynamics 38XL-SL-40
    Victor 82 (A-60)
    Hypertherm 45XP












    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong!

  14. #14
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    google search pulled up this page on esab that says the XL torch uses patented XT consumables.

    http://www.esabna.com/us/en/products...roductCode=159
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  15. #15
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Quote Originally Posted by Brand X View Post
    http://www.ebay.com/itm/5-Pack-20860...EAAOSwiDFYOSj2

    right stuff..

    You can get nozzles from Zoro tools also.. Aftermarket, but excellent USA quality.

    There is also a long life 35-40 amp nozzle available.. The E-bay ones are a little smaller orifice Both are good.. 21008
    So that is the most common issue is the nozzle needs replacing? what about the electrode or swirl ring?
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  16. #16
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Quote Originally Posted by N2 Welding View Post
    google search pulled up this page on esab that says the XL torch uses patented XT consumables.

    http://www.esabna.com/us/en/products...roductCode=159
    Yes i know, but there are machines with the other consumables.. Had many of these torches..
    Esab 2200i-TA34
    Klutch 220si
    Klutch 140si
    Thermal Arc LM-200 Lincoln feeders
    Thermal Arc Pee-Wee 85s
    Thermal Dynamics 38XL-SL-40
    Victor 82 (A-60)
    Hypertherm 45XP












    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong!

  17. #17
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Swirl-rings last until they don't..Nozzle... Look at the hole,.Round? Once you get on to using them, they will last pretty good.Swirl ring will go in either way to make the swirl go the other way.. Kind of cool really. Change your good side to where you want it.
    Esab 2200i-TA34
    Klutch 220si
    Klutch 140si
    Thermal Arc LM-200 Lincoln feeders
    Thermal Arc Pee-Wee 85s
    Thermal Dynamics 38XL-SL-40
    Victor 82 (A-60)
    Hypertherm 45XP












    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong!

  18. #18
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Just saw this 10x nozzle & 10x electrode kit for $25.00

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/PT31XT-amp-P.../221192704069?
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  19. #19
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Quote Originally Posted by N2 Welding View Post
    Just saw this 10x nozzle & 10x electrode kit for $25.00

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/PT31XT-amp-P.../221192704069?
    You will go through about 5-1 on nozzles. Electrodes seem ok, but not as good as factory. either.. The link I posted is where you want to go..
    There are better China nozzles, but not generally worth it, unless cutting crap parts on a dirty steel. I have had many esab's with that torch,but you might need to find out for yourself.. It's OK,but the Plasmadyne stuff really is low quality.

    Wait for a ebay, or zoro tool deal. These are excellent,

    https://www.zoro.com/search?q=&varia...ICAN+TORCH+TIP
    Last edited by Brand X; 03-27-2017 at 12:45 AM.
    Esab 2200i-TA34
    Klutch 220si
    Klutch 140si
    Thermal Arc LM-200 Lincoln feeders
    Thermal Arc Pee-Wee 85s
    Thermal Dynamics 38XL-SL-40
    Victor 82 (A-60)
    Hypertherm 45XP












    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong!

  20. #20
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Sounds like a good plan to buy all original parts while I still can and do like you say and use the cheap consumables for scrapping lawn tractors and such. I am so stoked about finally having a plasma cutter. Now I have to take the time to read the user / owners manual.

    Thanks for the help
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  21. #21
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Hooked it up today and made about 4 cuts across .250 x 3" that I had previously practiced welding flat bead on the back side. I just wanted to make sure it still works as it did the day I tested it out before buying it.

    I looked for a breakdown and list of consumables and found this page to describe all the part numbers for the gun. Is this all the parts I would ever need for the gun? From what I can see the electrode is the same regardless of what tip I am using and I see three different tips ranging in order 30amp, 40amp & 50amp.

    Would I ever benefit from using the 50amp tips since this is only a 40amp machine?

    Here is the parts list I was talking about.

    https://weldingsupply.com/cgi-bin/en...rch:esabconsum

    EDIT: I see there is 15amp, 30amp, 40amp, 50amp, 30amp XT, 35/40amp XT & 50amp XT tips. So in total about 7 different tips to choose from? All using the same electrode?

    I'm hoping to clear up the confusion as to what tips I should be getting.

    So many questions. How often does the plunger need replacing?

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    Last edited by N2 Welding; 03-29-2017 at 12:24 AM.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  22. #22
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    The 21008,20860 nozzles are all you should use.. Think about the 21008 as the long life nozzles, and the 20860 as the high performance nozzles.. That's how they are sold at some places.. The 15 amp you will not find, and the 50 amps will do nothing, but really lower the cut quality, and speed. Bad idea..
    Esab 2200i-TA34
    Klutch 220si
    Klutch 140si
    Thermal Arc LM-200 Lincoln feeders
    Thermal Arc Pee-Wee 85s
    Thermal Dynamics 38XL-SL-40
    Victor 82 (A-60)
    Hypertherm 45XP












    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong!

  23. #23
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Thanks again
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  24. #24
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    I wanted to look at the condition of the parts under a microscope " poor vision " and discovered the tip that was on the machine is actually a 50amp tip. This makes me a little excited to see what the other tips will cut like. Just ordered the 30 amp precision tips on ebay and about to pull the trigger on the 40amp kit So I have a nice package to keep all the consumables together as well as the Lube.

    How or where is the Lube applied in the gun or parts?

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    Last edited by N2 Welding; 03-29-2017 at 01:17 PM.
    '65 Lincoln Idealarc 250 AC/DC
    ESAB REBEL EMP 215ic
    L-tec PCM-VPi 40A plasma
    Victor Performer O/A
    Lincoln Viking 4C 3350

  25. #25
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    Re: L-Tec PCM-VPi but it is said

    Put it on the torch o-ring.. if you feel like putting a tiny/thin layer bit on the back on the electrode,it won't hurt anything. Towards the pin in the torch.. I still like the PT.31 torch , and you will find .250 ms will cut as nice as anything made today. It will also do a nice clean cut on Aluminum..It's not that I have not owned other machines to compare too. Smallest torch head you will find too. I wish i would of kept my Handyplasma 380 with it;s 25 ft torch lead I put on it..I really like torches with a reversible swirl ring for cutting left handed..

    By the way, I have the adapter to mount a Victor SL-60 torch with the ATC setup to all those Esab's. Only makes sense to do on the 875-1125 machines, because you give up way too much on the 40 amps and below machines.You only gain on the bigger machines..
    Last edited by Brand X; 03-29-2017 at 01:40 PM.
    Esab 2200i-TA34
    Klutch 220si
    Klutch 140si
    Thermal Arc LM-200 Lincoln feeders
    Thermal Arc Pee-Wee 85s
    Thermal Dynamics 38XL-SL-40
    Victor 82 (A-60)
    Hypertherm 45XP












    If I agreed with you, we'd both be wrong!

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